December 4, 2017
By Faith, or by Works of the Law?
3 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? zIt was before your eyes that JesusChrist was publicly aportrayed as crucified. 2 Let me ask you only this: bDid youreceive the Spirit by works of the law or by chearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish?dHaving begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4 eDid yousuffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? 5 Does he who supplies the Spiritto you and fworks miracles among you do so gby works of the law, or by hearing with faith— 6 just as hAbraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”?
7 Know then that it is ithose of faith who are jthe sons of Abraham. 8 And theScripture, foreseeing that kGod would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospelbeforehand to Abraham, saying, l“In you shall all the nations be blessed.” 9 So then, thosewho are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.
December 4, 2017
Justified by Faith
15 We ourselves are Jews by birth and not mGentile sinners; 16 yet we know that na personis not justified by works of the law obut through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also havebelieved in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of thelaw, pbecause by works of the law no one will be justified.
17 But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found qto be sinners, isChrist then a servant of sin? Certainly not! 18 For if I rebuild what I tore down, I provemyself to be a transgressor. 19 For through the law I rdied to the law, so that I might sliveto God. 20 I have been tcrucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ wholives uin me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, vwholoved me and wgave himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God, for xifrighteousness were through the law, ythen Christ died for no purpose.
December 4, 2017
Paul Accepted by the Apostles
2 Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titusalong with me. 2 I went up because of a revelation and set before them (thoughprivately before those lwho seemed influential) the gospel that mI proclaim among theGentiles, nin order to make sure I was not running or had not orun in vain. 3 But evenTitus, who was with me, pwas not forced to be circumcised, though he was a Greek. 4 qYetbecause of false brothers secretly brought in—who rslipped in to spy out sour freedomthat we have in Christ Jesus, tso that they might bring us into slavery— 5 to them we didnot yield in submission even for a moment, so that uthe truth of the gospel might bepreserved for you. 6 And from those vwho seemed to be influential (what they were makesno difference to me; wGod shows no partiality)—those, I say, who seemed influentialxadded nothing to me. 7 On the contrary, when they saw that I had been yentrusted withzthe gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel to thecircumcised 8 (for he who worked through Peter for his apostolic ministry to thecircumcised worked also through me for mine to the Gentiles), 9 and when James andCephas and John, vwho seemed to be apillars, perceived the bgrace that was given to me,they cgave the right hand of fellowship to Barnabas and me, that we should go to theGentiles and they to the circumcised. 10 Only, they asked us to remember the poor, dthevery thing I was eager to do.
Paul Opposes Peter
11 But ewhen Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him fto his face, because he stoodcondemned. 12 For before certain men came from James, ghe was eating with the Gentiles;but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing hthe circumcisionparty. 13 And the rest of the Jews acted hypocritically along with him, so that evenBarnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. 14 But when I saw that their iconduct was notin step with jthe truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas kbefore them all, “If you, though aJew, llive like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you force the Gentiles to live likeJews?”
December 4, 2017
Paul Called by God
11 For uI would have you know, brothers, that vthe gospel that was preached by me isnot man's gospel. 12 wFor I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it, but Ireceived it xthrough a revelation of Jesus Christ. 13 For you have heard of ymy former lifein Judaism, how zI persecuted the church of God violently and tried to destroy it. 14 And Iwas advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people, so extremelyazealous was I for bthe traditions of my fathers. 15 But when he cwho had set me apartdbefore I was born, and who ecalled me by his grace, 16 was pleased to reveal his Son tome, in order fthat I might preach him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consultwith anyone; 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me, but Iwent away into Arabia, and returned again to Damascus.
18 Then gafter three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas and remained withhim fifteen days. 19 But I saw none of the other apostles except James hthe Lord's brother.20 (In what I am writing to you, ibefore God, I do not lie!) 21 jThen I went into the regionsof Syria and Cilicia. 22 And I was still unknown in person to kthe churches of Judea thatare in Christ. 23 They only were hearing it said, “He who used to persecute us is nowpreaching the faith he once tried to destroy.” 24 And they glorified God because of me.
November 10, 2017
1 Paul, an aapostle—bnot from men nor through man, but cthrough Jesus Christ andGod the Father, dwho raised him from the dead— 2 and all ethe brothers who arewith me,
To fthe churches of Galatia:
3 gGrace to you and peace hfrom God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, 4 iwhogave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present jevil age, according to the will ofkour God and Father, 5 to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
No Other Gospel
6 I am astonished that you are lso quickly deserting mhim who called you in the graceof Christ and are turning to na different gospel— 7 onot that there is another one, butpthere are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if weor qan angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preachedto you, rlet him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone ispreaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, rlet him be accursed.
10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying sto please man?If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a tservant of Christ.
November 10, 2017
11 And every priest stands hdaily at his service, ioffering repeatedly the same sacrifices,jwhich can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ had offered for all time a singlesacrifice for sins, he ksat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time luntilhis enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. 14 For by a single offering mhe hasperfected for all time those who are being sanctified.
15 And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying,
16 n“This is the covenant that I will make with them
after those days, declares the Lord:
I will put my laws on their hearts,
and write them on their minds,”
17 then he adds,
o“I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.”
18 Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.
The Full Assurance of Faith
19 pTherefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter qthe holy places by theblood of Jesus, 20 by rthe new and living way that he opened for us through sthe curtain,that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have ta great priest over the house of God, 22 letus draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts usprinkled cleanvfrom an evil conscience and our bodies wwashed with pure water.
November 3, 2017
5 Jonah went out of the city and sat to the east of the city and made a booth for himself there. He sat under it in the shade, till he should see what would become of the city. 6 Now the Lord God appointed a plantand made it come up over Jonah, that it might be a shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort. So Jonah was exceedingly glad because of the plant. 7 But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the plant, so that it withered. 8 When the sun rose, God appointed a scorching east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint. And he asked that he might die and said, “It is better for me to die than to live.” 9 But God said to Jonah, “Do you do well to be angry for the plant?” And he said, “Yes, I do well to be angry, angry enough to die.” 10 And the Lord said, “You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?”
November 3, 2017
Jonah's Anger and the Lord's Compassion
4 But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was angry. 2 And he prayed to the Lord and said, “O Lord, is not this what I said when I was yet in my country? That is why I made haste to flee to Tarshish; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster. 3 Therefore now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.” 4 And the Lord said, “Do you do well to be angry?”
November 3, 2017
4 Jonah began to go into the city, going a day's journey. And he called out, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!” 5 And the people of Nineveh believed God. They called for a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least of them.
The People of Nineveh Repent
6 The word reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.7 And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water, 8 but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. 9 Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.”
10 When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God relented of the disaster that he had said he would do to them, and he did not do it.
September 25, 2017
A Great Fish Swallows Jonah
17 And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.
2 Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish,2 saying,
“I called out to the Lord, out of my distress,
and he answered me;
out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
and you heard my voice.
3 For you cast me into the deep,
into the heart of the seas,
and the flood surrounded me;
all your waves and your billows
passed over me.
4 Then I said, ‘I am driven away
from your sight;
yet I shall again look
upon your holy temple.’
5 The waters closed in over me to take my life;
the deep surrounded me;
weeds were wrapped about my head
6 at the roots of the mountains.
I went down to the land
whose bars closed upon me forever;
yet you brought up my life from the pit,
O Lord my God.
7 When my life was fainting away,
I remembered the Lord,
and my prayer came to you,
into your holy temple.
8 Those who pay regard to vain idols
forsake their hope of steadfast love.
9 But I with the voice of thanksgiving
will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed I will pay.
Salvation belongs to the Lord!”
10 And the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah out upon the dry land.